A relationship between a barber and their clients can be special, almost like a family bond. If you watched the amazing TV show “New Amsterdam,” you might already be familiar with the initiative we’ll present now 😊
Lorenzo Lewis wanted to leverage this relationship and founded the Confess Project. As part of this project, he opened the first mental health barbershop in the US. The idea is to train barbers to be mental health advocates and pick up on signs of when their clients are going through rough patches.
Engaging in a conversation and providing support can go a long way towards building a positive culture for young men of colour, boys and their families, and changing assumptions about mental health.90% of the clients involved in this project indicated they would rather receive therapy through their barbershop than go into a therapy clinic. To be fair, if you get mental health support from trained people and a rad haircut on top of it, it’s a pretty sweet combo 😎
Tens of millions of people struggle with mental health in the US, so this movement has naturally reached virtually every part of the country. Their goal is to train 1,000 barbers by the end of the year.
Mental health doesn’t have to be taboo. Initiatives like this are essential, and we hope that we will find other innovative ways to support our amazing youth and help it thrive.